Hickory – Local high school juniors and seniors may soon apply to earn credits toward their college degrees through the Lenoir-Rhyne University High School Scholars Academy (HSSA). Since 2007, hundreds of high school students have taken part in the program, which begins accepting applications for the 2023-24 school year this fall.
The application opened on Oct. 1, 2022, and three information sessions are available on the LR campus for families interested in HSSA. The first two sessions are scheduled at 7 p.m. on Oct. 20, 2022, Dec. 6, 2022 in room 213 of the McCrorie Center. The location for the third session on Jan. 19, 2023 at 7 p.m. will be announced on the undergraduate admission website later this fall.
Applications, including recommendation letters, are due Feb. 15, 2023. Students enrolled in the Catawba County, Hickory City and Newton-Conover City school systems get first preference for admission, but the university also considers qualified candidates from private schools, homeschools and other school systems if space is available.
“The greatest benefit of the HSSA program is that it fully immerses high school students in university life, including in-person courses designed for first-year college students and student life. HSSA students also have full access to the university’s academic and wellness support services,” said Morgan Logan, assistant director of undergraduate admission.
To meet North Carolina graduation requirements, juniors enroll in English Honors III and seniors in English Honors IV. HSSA students may also opt to take Advanced Placement (AP) Language and AP Literature. All English courses are taught on LR’s campus. Program participants may then take as many as three university courses at LR during the fall term and up to four courses during the spring term – earning college credit toward a degree at LR or for transfer to another institution.
HSSA students have full access to the university’s resources, including the gymnasium, libraries, counseling center, career services, learning commons and student activities. Taking part in campus life gives students more than just an expanded transcript.
“I could not speak more highly of the program,” shared Diego Sanjuan, HSSA alumnus and current LR junior. “HSSA helped me appreciate the great community and resources available at LR. It allowed me to form deep connections with my peers and professors, so I was better prepared for the college environment and felt more comfortable facing a new chapter in my academic career.”